Women forcibly returned to North Korea suffer appalling violations in detention – UN report
GENEVA / SEOUL (28 July 2020) – Women detained in the Democratic People’s Republic of Korea (DPRK) are subjected to multiple and serious human rights violations by State security and police officials according to a UN human rights report published on Tuesday.
The report is based on 100 first-hand accounts by North Korean women who were detained in the DPRK from 2009 to 2019 after being forcibly returned. These women, who eventually managed to escape the DPRK, gave detailed interviews to UN Human Rights staff.
Although traveling abroad is effectively prohibited in the DPRK, women embark on dangerous journeys looking for life-saving sources of income or a new life abroad. They often fall into the hands of human traffickers, ending up as cheap bonded labour or exploited sexually, and, at times, forced into marriage. Upon their return to the DPRK, these women are detained by the Ministry of State Security or the Ministry of People’s Security. They are often sentenced to imprisonment by State officials without a trial, or after proceedings that do not meet international norms and standards for due process and a fair trial. ......